Cod in Creamy Lemon Sauce

Some Sunday’s I can’t be bothered to make a roast. This is a divine alternative.

Cod fillets in a creamy lemon sauce with capers and dill. I serve it with buttered baby new potatoes and tender-stem broccoli. Always with music, always with candles and always with ice cold white wine.

Serves 2

Ingredients

2 cod fillets

150ml double cream

Juice of 1 lemon

2 tablespoons capers

2 cloves garlic – minced

Salt and cracked black pepper to season

Sprig of dill

1 tablespoon white wine

Lemon slices to garnish.

Method

Place your cod in a foil parcel and leave slightly open.

In a small saucepan add your cream, wine, lemon juice, garlic and capers. Simmer over a low heat for a couple of minutes.

Pour over the cod and dot on a few sprigs of dill.

Bake in the centre of the oven for approximately 12 minutes.

Remove and serve immediately.


Spaghetti Bolognaise

I hope you like my twist on a classic. The sauce is rich and full of tomato deliciousness. I always make a soffritto

first as this gives the sauce such a lovely flavour. My tip is to always buy the best chopped tomatoes you can as

it really makes a difference to the richness of the sauce. I’m not adverse to blending a few sun dried tomatoes

into the sauce either, a slosh of red wine, chuck it all in!

I serve it with lots of fresh grated parmesan, garlic bread and a glass of full bodied red. Always with candles, always with music.

serves 4

Ingredients

500g steak mince – 5% fat

500g passata

1 tin chopped tomatoes

1 small onion – diced

1 small carrot – grated

1 stick of celery – finely chopped

3 large garlic cloves

2 tablespoons tomato puree

200ml red wine – any will do

1 teaspoon oregano

Salt and cracked black pepper to season

1 cup frozen peas

1 cup mushrooms

Glug of olive oil

Pack of spaghetti

Knob of butter

Method

Start by making your soffritto. In a pan of hot olive oil add your oregano and garlic, then slowly cook your onions, carrot and celery until softened. This will take about 10 minutes.

Now add your mince and brown it. When the mince starts to brown a little add your wine allow to bubble a little and mix thoroughly.

Tip in your tomato puree, tomatoes and passata, then stir.

Add the mushrooms and peas.

Allow to simmer for an hour or so over a gentle heat stirring every now and then.

Have a little taste and season with salt and cracked black pepper.

Put on a pan of boiling salted water for your spaghetti and cook according to packet instructions. I always cook for 1 minute less so my pasta is al dente.

Drain the spaghetti in a colander and stir through a knob of butter.

Plate up the spaghetti and spoon your bolognaise on top and serve immediately.

Pour yourself a glass of red and enjoy.


Chicken and Chorizo Arrabiata

This is a favourite in our house. I make this for my Mia who has a few dinners on rotation that she will eat but she could eat this every day she loves it so much.

You can add as much or as little chilli as you like according to how hot you like it. The addition of chorizo really elevates the flavour.

This is one I make most weeks. Serve with fresh basil, parmesan cheese, garlic bread and a nice glass of red.

Serves 4

Ingredients

3 chicken breasts – diced

1/2 ring of chorizo

1 small onion – diced

1 can of chopped tomatoes

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon light brown sugar

2 tablespoons spoons pasta water

Glug of red wine – any will do

1 tablespoon butter

Salt and cracked black pepper

2 teaspoons chilli flakes

fresh basil and parmesan cheese to serve

Extra virgin olive oil

400g rigatoni

Knob of butter to stir through pasta.

Method

Start by cooking down your chopped onion in a pan of hot olive oil until the onions soften. Keep stirring so they do not burn. Turn the heat low while you chop the chorizo.

Once you have chopped your chorizo into rounds about 1cm thick add to the pan of onions along with the chilli flakes. Pan fry the chorizo until it starts to get a little crispy. Set aside both the onions and chorizo on a separate plate.

In the same pan add your diced chicken breast. The oil will be fragrant from the onions, chilli and chorizo. You may need to add a little glug more to make sure the chicken is lightly coated.

Once the chicken is almost cooked add your onions and chorizo back to the pan. Now add the chopped tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, butter and red wine, stirring to combine. Simmer gently for 10 minutes or so while you are boiling your pasta. This should take roughly 10 minutes but I always finish it 1 minute less than cooking time so it is al dente. Always add salt to the pasta water. We want it salty like the Med. Give it a stir now and then.

Once your pasta is cooked. Drain and toss through a knob of butter and add to the pan of sauce. Season with salt and cracked black pepper.

Serve immediately with fresh basil, parmesan cheese and garlic bread.


Citrus Salmon

I always try to eat a little lighter at this time of the year, don’t we all. Bringing you a little salmon inspiration with this citrus salmon.

I’ve added a drizzle of honey for sweetness.

Effortlessly simple to make and ready in minutes.

Serves 2

Ingredients

2 salmon fillets

Juice of half a lemon

Salt and cracked black pepper

Drizzle of honey

Teaspoon cajun seasoning

Method

Pre heat oven to 180c / 160c fan.

Place salmon fillets on a foil lined baking sheet using enough foil to fold over the top.

Squeeze over the lemon juice and drizzle over a little honey. Shake over your cajun seasoning and season with salt and cracked black pepper.

Fold the foil over the top of the salmon making a parcel leaving a little gap.

Cook in the oven on the middle shelf for 12-15 minutes.

Serve with asparagus and your rice of choice.


Spicy Vegetable Chilli

I’ve devised this gorgeous autumnal spicy chilli recipe for my loyal vegetarian / vegan followers. Not my family as if I offer them chilli without meat they think it is a cruel trick. Personally I love it.

I’ve not added pumpkins to the chilli, they are for aesthetic purposes only to make it look a bit Halloweeny, as let’s be honest I think I speak for everyone in saying that would be rank! We lugged these things for miles so I’m using them in some way!

This is healthy and low in fat. I make it with tinned cherry tomatoes for added sweetness. It’s divine with lots of fresh coriander and mango chutney.

Happy Halloween!

Ingredients

350g butternut squash and sweet potato mix

1 tin cherry tomatoes

1 tin red kidney beans in chilli sauce

1 tin black beans – drained

Olive oil

3 cloves garlic – minced

150ml water

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

4 teaspoons paprika

4 teaspoons ground cumin

3 tablespoons tomato puree

Salt and cracked black pepper

1 tablespoon Worcester sauce

Method

Add a glug of olive oil to the pan and cook down your onions until they are translucent.

Add your garlic, all the spices and then the cherry tomatoes.

Pour in the kidney beans in chilli and black beans and then add the butternut squash and sweet potato.

Stir in the tomato puree, Worcester sauce, water and season.

Simmer gently for approximately an hour or until the butternut squash and sweet potato cubes are tender to bite into.

Serve with lots of mango chutney, fresh coriander and rice if you fancy.


Braised Beef in Red Wine

Low and slow cooked fall apart braised beef in rich red wine sauce. I prefer it with rice as I’m not really a fan of mashed potato. It gives me traumatic flashbacks of school dinners but it’s your call.

It’s my favourite time of year when summer slowly slips into Autumn. I love snuggle in weather with soft jumpers, red wine and candles. This is the perfect dinner for it.

Ingredients

600g lean diced beef

2 red peppers

1 courgette

1 teaspoon mixed herbs

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons butter

1 onion – chopped

3 cloves garlic

300ml beef stock

150ml red wine

Salt and cracked black pepper

2 tablespoons Worcester sauce

1 tablespoon plain flour

Method

Pre heat oven to 160c / 140c fan

Heat your olive oil in a frying pan and brown the beef. Transfer to a plate.

Pan fry the onions and courgettes in the minced garlic for 3-4 minutes and set aside.

Mix your flour and wine to form a paste.

Transfer the beef and vegetables into an oven proof dish and pour over the stock and wine. Add the herbs and Worcester sauce. Season and stir to combine.

Cover and slow cook in the oven for approximately three hours. Have a little test of the beef to make sure it falls apart after three hours. If so remove from oven. If not allow to cook for another half hour or so until the beef is so tender that it falls apart.


Duck in Orange Sauce

If you are a fan of duck you are going to love this recipe. Effortlessly quick and simple as with most of my recipes. I add a bit of star anise to the sauce to give it a subtle twist on a classic. I hope you like it.

Serves 2

Ingredients

2 duck breasts – skin on

2 tablespoons olive oil

For the sauce

Zest and juice of 1 large orange

100ml apple juice

1 teaspoon cornflour, teaspoon or so of water to make a paste

1 teaspoon light brown sugar

1 star anise

Method

Pre heat oven to 200c / 180c fan

Start by patting your duck breasts dry and scoring them in a criss cross pattern.

Season them with salt and pepper

Pour your olive oil in a pan and add the duck breasts skin side down. Cook for 5 minutes over a moderate heat. Turn for 1 minute to seal.

Place duck breasts into an oven proof dish and cook skin side up on the middle shelf for 15 mins.

Remove from oven and rest for 10 – 15 mins.

Meanwhile, make the sauce.

Start by adding your apple juice, orange zest, brown sugar and star anise to a small saucepan and bringing to the boil to reduce. Add a teaspoon of water to your cornflour to make a paste and tip it into the pan. Simmer for 5 minutes stirring all the while.

Add the duck to a plate and pour over the sauce. Serve immediately with asparagus and green beans.


Sirloin Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

I’ve been meaning to make chimichurri sauce for ages and I’m glad I did, everyone loved it. Parsley, garlic, chilli, the list goes on…..

If you’re going on a first date the next day, don’t bother though as they will pass out and you will take their eyelashes off if you breathe on them. Just hang around by yourself for a day or so.

I serve it with rice instead of chips as I’m weird and prefer that along with a rocket and parmesan salad.

Serves 2

Ingredients

1 sirloin steak each

Chimichurri

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1/4 cup parsley – finely chopped

1 hot red chilli – chopped small

3 cloves garlic – minced

2 teaspoons oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper

Method

Simply add all your ingredients to a small bowl and mix. Rub your steaks with olive oil, salt and pepper and cook over a high heat to your liking. Spoon over your chimichurri and serve immediately.


King Prawn Rice Bowl

Fresh, crunchy and full of aromatic flavour. Juicy king prawns, crunchy mange tout and mini corn come together with red peppers and spring onion in this healthy prawn rice bowl. I pack loads of coriander in as I think it compliments this dish no end. The sauce is heavenly and made up of hoisin, soy, coconut milk and lots of fresh lime juice squeezed in. I cook the rice in a mix of water and coconut milk light to give it a gentle coconut taste. Quick, easy, healthy and delicious. Enjoy!

Serves 3

Ingredients

1 cup rice ( cooked in 1 cup water and 3/4 cup coconut milk light

200g king prawns

150g mange tout

130g mini corn

1/2 red pepper – sliced into strips

Tablespoon poppy seeds

Tablespoon toasted sesame oil

Coriander (optional but recommended)

Sauce

2 cloves garlic – minced

Thumb size piece of ginger – grated

Juice of 1 lime

2 tablespoons hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

Salt and cracked black pepper to season

3 tablespoons coconut milk light.

Method

Start by cooking your rice in a separate pan. Rinse thoroughly in a sieve and tip in 1 cup of water and 3/4 cup of coconut milk light to give the rice a gentle coconut flavour. Cook low and slow with the lid on until all the liquid has evaporated. I would recommend cooking the rice first as it will be fine to sit and rest for a few extra minutes with the lid on while you cook the prawns and veg.

Start by rinsing your vegetables

Chop your corn into three pieces and your pepper into strips, then chop your spring onion into 1cm pieces.

Mix up your sauce in a small bowl and set aside.

Add your sesame oil to the wok and heat over a moderate heat adding your veg along with a tablespoon of the sauce and stir frying for a few minutes to lightly soften. You don’t want to over cook it as you want it to have a crunch when you bit into it.

Now add your prawns and the rest of the sauce. Stir fry for another couple of minutes so the prawns are warmed through if fresh and cooked through if frozen.

Once the rice is cooked transfer your rice to bowls and top with the prawn and vegetable mix.

Sprinkle over your poppy seeds and fresh coriander if desired.


Teriyaki Beef Stir Fry

As you know, I love a quick and easy dinner. When it’s hot outside I want something simple and healthy. This teriyaki marinade works well with beef, chicken or salmon.

I much prefer to make a stir fry with fresh individual ingredients rather than a bag of standard stir fry mix. It just tastes a lot better and full of crunchy loveliness. The lime adds a fresh zing.

Serves 2

Ingredients

2 sirloin steaks

2 glugs sesame oil

Stir Fry sauce

2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce

1 tablespoon dark soy sauce

2 cloves garlic – minced

Juice of 1/2 a lime

1 teaspoon honey

——–

1 nest of noodles

Salt and cracked black pepper to season

1 cup mange tout

1 cup mini corn – chopped

1/2 red pepper

1 small carrot – thinly sliced

2 cabbage leaves

1/2 tin water chestnuts – drained

Method

Firstly mix up your sauce and set aside.

Add your noodles to a pan of boiling water.

Rub your steaks with a little oil and slice into thin strips about 1cm thick, removing any fat.

Chop all your veg into smallish pieces.

Heat your wok and pan fry your steak over a high heat for a couple of minutes adding a tablespoon of the stir fry sauce.

Add a drizzle more oil and put in your vegetables and pan fry until slightly softened but still crisp to bite. This should take about 5 minutes or so.

Once your noodles are cooked, drain them and add a teaspoon of sesame oil to loosen. Tip them into the mix and then add the stir fry sauce ensuring all the ingredients are fully coated.

Serve immediately.